As I prepare to leave my house for a week at the #BlogPaws 2015 Conference in Nashville, I am methodically going through my check list for what I am packing to take with me to the conference. I am checking off items on my to-do lists that need to be done both before I leave and items that need to be addressed even when I am out of the office. Social media and its tasks and my client tasks don’t take a week off simply because I am not in my office.
If you’re an entrepreneur you understand that — business must go on whether you’re working in your home office, an airport or a remote location. Of course if you’re on vacation or at a conference you may not have the luxury, nor will you want to have to toil away in front of the computer while you’re away. Here are some time-saving social media tips that I hope you will find useful:
Build relationships. Because social media is about relationships, focus your efforts there. Post your social media updates, but spend time “checking in” with online friends by commenting on their posts and sharing their updates on your social media platforms. If you’re sharing and commenting you don’t have to “think” so much about what you’ll post.
Use your smartphone to your advantage. Many entrepreneurs wouldn’t leave home without their smartphones and if you’re one of them, make sure your phone has apps downloaded for the social media platforms you frequent the most. Send updates from your phone as a way to stay connected. Make sure you’re taking photos from your smartphone, add those to your updates to add interest to them when they show up in your social media stream.
Focus on your top three social media platforms. Remain active on those while you’re away. You don’t have to completely neglect your other social media, but chances are you have three on which you’re most active and those are the ones you should focus your efforts on because that is where you would be missed.
Use a content calendar. This is akin to the editorial calendar that you use for your blog posts. A content calendar for your social media could be snippets of text you have found that you want to share with your followers, it could be sharing content from an old blog post you’ve written or sharing a blog post written by a colleague. Your content calendar can help you — if you build it — when you’re away because you could simply pull it up and copy the update you’ve planned, paste it into the status update and viola — you’re remaining connected.
Even entrepreneurs need to take a vacation. Entrepreneurs definitely need to get out of the office and network as a way to build their business. This doesn’t mean you have to go radio silent, but it does mean you either need to have a content marketing specialist in your corner or you need to plan for your time away by adding “nurturing social media relationships” to your pre-out-of-office checklist.